Roughly 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused by the time they reach adulthood. That’s not just nationally, that’s right here in Utah. These numbers demonstrate the stark reality of child abuse, and reinforce why it is so important for the community to spread awareness and take steps to end child abuse.
Last week the County Council passed a joint proclamation with Mayor Ben McAdams’ office designating April 2017 as Child Abuse Prevention Month. By doing this, we want to help bring attention to the 3,708 confirmed child victims of abuse in Salt Lake County alone last year. All children deserve to grow up in homes where they are safe and nurtured, and free from any form of abuse. We appreciate the Family Support Center for bringing this to our attention and for being at the event to join us in the recognition.
We also contributed $2,500 to Prevent Child Abuse Utah (PCAU), a group that educates Utah children about how to recognize signs of abuse. I sit on the board for PCAU, and I’ve been deeply impressed with their work. They visit schools around the state and educate children using easy to understand, age-appropriate concepts. Sadly in some cases, it is a parent or relative who is abusing the child. This education can help prevent that.
The $2,500 contribution will “adopt a school,” providing funding for this educational outreach to an entire school in Salt Lake County this year. I’m glad we can support this effort this year, and so grateful to the work of PCAU. You may see a pinwheel garden in front of the Salt Lake County Government Center on 2100 South State Street. These pinwheels represent the innocence of children and that every person deserves to have a happy childhood.
Visit pcautah.org if you want to learn more about how you can help keep the children in your life safe.